Saturday, December 18, 2010

Part 3: Sugar Cookies!

Before Simon and I were destroyed by the stomach flue this week, we completed the third and final chapter of our Christmas spectacular adventures. Alton Brown supplied us with this recipe via the wonderful ways of the internet.

It's pretty basic; make a wet bowl and a dry bowl, then slowly add the dry to the wet, stirring often:

keep stirring until it makes a nice little ball...or pick it up in your hands and squish it into a ball when you get tired of stirring...
Once in a ball, cover with plastic and put in the fridge for about 2 hours. What I really like about this recipe is that Alton Brown suggests rolling the dough in powdered sugar instead of flour. It worked really well and added a nice, light sugar taste to the cookie instead of that unpleasant flour taste.

Roll it out to about 1/4 inch, cut, and decorate!

Sadly, this is where disaster struck. Sugar cookies only cook for about 9 minutes...TOPS. What only cooks for 9 minutes? It is too easy to forget about something cooking for only 9 minutes! So...we forgot...and half of them burned. The other half, however, were delicious.

And yes, I know, we are not the world's best decorators. It was fun, however, and we enjoyed playing with the frosting!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Peppermint Bark!!

Christmas Spectacular part 2!

We made peppermint bark using this recipe! This has to be the simplest cookie/holiday treat ever. All I needed was brown chocolate (I used some chocolate chips that we use in pancakes), white chocolate, vegetable oil, peppermint extract, and some silicone ice cube trays in the shapes of stars....stars are christmas-y, right?

oh, and also some crushed candy canes. The recipe suggests using a meat tenderizer. Since I do not have a meat tenderizer, I used a hammer..bang bang!

First step is to add some vegetable oil to the brown chocolate, melt it, and then add half of the peppermint extract. Then, stir, pour, and add candy canes. Put in the fridge for about half an hour or until they are nice and solid.

I was a little nervous about the white chocolate. Sometimes white chocolate can taste funny and people don't usually like it as much as brown chocolate, but this candy melts white chocolate tasted delicious.

Repeat the brown chocolate process with the white chocolate, and put it back in the fridge:

Half an hour later, pop them out and yummmmmmm!

I intend to make some more and bring them to my office holiday party next Monday :)

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas Spectacular part 1

That's right, Christmas Spectacular!

I really love Christmas Trees, like super duper adore them. Unfortunately, I haven't had one since I left for college...oh..say..roughly 5-6 years ago. Now that we have our own place I was so excited to get a tree (!), but then I thought about it and realized we do not have the space for a full sized tree. I spent some time super bummed and then Simon suggested we get a tiny fake one and it will be our own until we get a larger place. So we did and I love it!

We had some red Christmas ornaments and some silver spirals and a fat headed snowman, but nothing altogether colorful. That's when I decided to make wet felted garland!

I bought the wool above from a store on etsy. It is really bright and soft and gorgeous.

We then set forth and made a gigantic mess. Once the balls are wrapped dry, we had to soak them in hot soapy water and roll, roll, roll until all was felted:

Some turned out better than others but eventually we made balls out of all of the wool. Here are a few along the way:

Hours later we strung them onto some black embroidery floss and placed it on the tree! We didn't have quite enough to loop it all around the tree, but Simon managed to cross it back and forth across the front to make the most of what we had.

So pretty, so happy : )